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Do the Utah Jazz Miss Jerry Sloan's Toughness? Downbeat #1707

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Because it's the offseason and we have to find things to talk about.

Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

Scraping the bottom of the barrel here for Jazz tidbits, so forgive if this Downbeat is shorter than usual. It's a slow time of year.

Reddit can be a sketchy place at the best of times, but r/NBA often has some gems worth mining for, like this thread from a couple days ago about John Stockton missing so few games in his NBA career:

Even more impressive about Stockton. He played 19 seasons from 1984-85 to 2002-03, and of 22 total games missed, 4 were during 89-90 and the other 18 were during 97-98. He didn't miss a single game in 17 out of his 19 seasons, while managing to be arguably the greatest pure PG to ever play.

And that quote is from an apparent Celtics fan, so those are 100% non-partisan props.

Commenters in the thread also began swapping Jerry Sloan stories, to amusing (and profane) effect:

"Nobody fights with Jerry because you know the price would be too high. You might come out the winner, at his age. You might even lick him. But you'd lose an eye, an arm, your testicles in the process. Everything would be gone." - Frank Layden.

Sloan was the nastiest, toughest, dirtiest SOB to ever play the game.

Of course, Jerry is still with the Jazz in his advisory role. (And thank goodness he did not end up coaching elsewhere. I don't think I could've handled it.) But do you think this current Jazz team misses his toughness? I tend to prefer Quin Snyder's more cerebral -- though terrifying -- brand of leadership in general, but every so often a team needs a physical leader. I'm not sure the Jazz have one right now. Off the top of my head I'd point to Rudy Gobert, but he's still young and not necessarily an enforcer-type. And teams like the Spurs have shown it's possible to play great defense without getting an abundance of fouls or techs. Maybe it's less important to have that designated hitman in today's NBA.

I'm not trying to wallow in the good ol' days or anything -- I generally like the NBA game more now than in the late '90s Jazz heyday. Just a point to consider as the team moves forward. What do you think? More toughness needed, or nah?

Right. Buncha short items now.

Jazz broadcaster and how-is-his-voice-that-low crooner Thurl Bailey has kids, and one of those kids plays ball at American Fork High School, and he's narrowing down his list of colleges:

No word yet on where Thurl's goggles will attend school.

FanPost time!

bean_dip on Derrick Favors and USA Basketball:

Derrick is better off staying at home and just relaxing. Let your body heal and don't do anything where there's an injury risk. It sounds like he's disappointed for not being invited but I think it's a good thing and he and the Jazz are better off with him staying at home.

manux59 on improvements to expect from the Jazz next year:

The season is finished since April 15th which, lets our players to rest and to prepare/improve individually for the next season.

Let's review which improvement did we need to became better as an unit.

nc2003 on what to do post-Dante-ACL:

What do the Jazz do now? I don't know. There's too many variables for anyone to know for sure. Steering the Jazz through this will be Dennis Lindsey's greatest challenge to date. Look at all that he has to consider. Is Dante injury prone? This was his 2nd injury this summer. Will he ever be as quick as he was (this was his best asset)? How long will it take for him to recover and will it be a full recovery and is the injury likely to happen again?

Thanks for keeping us thinking during the offseason, folks.

Here's a look at Gordon Hayward blitzing fools in some offseason workouts:

I assume these words are French. The English translations are driving me nuts, because they translate to two nouns and one adjective. Parallel construction, please!

(Yes, I'm this annoying about words at my day job. Mamas, don't let your babies grow up to be editors.)